LUIS SUAREZ CLAIMS Manchester United’s ‘political power’ was to blame for the criticism he received during his race row with Patrice Evra.
Liverpool striker Suarez was fined and suspended for eight matches in December after being found guilty of racially abusing United defender Evra in a Premier League match.
Suarez then received heavy criticism for failing to shake Evra’s hand when the two players met again later in the season. But the Uruguay international believes that the incident was a ‘misunderstanding’ and even suggested that the controversy was ‘all arranged’ against him.
“Before the match against Man United, I promised my wife, the manager and the directors that I was going to shake my hand with Evra,” Suarez said during an interview on Uruguayan television.
“Why not, I thought, because I had no problems with him. I had been punished because of him, but I had no problems with shaking hands. But I was not forced to greet him. In fact, there was the possibility that neither Man United nor Liverpool’s players would shake hands, as it had happened with Queens Park Rangers and Chelsea.
“But I thought why not, if my punishment was over. I had no problems with Evra. It was only a handshake and I was OK with that. But it was a misunderstanding, what happened between me and Evra at Old Trafford. In fact, I think it was all arranged against me again, as it had happened with the punishment.
“The media in England showed the moment when I passed in front of him, but they didn’t see that he had his hand low before. Only the media in Uruguay but also in Spain showed that I wanted to shake his hand. But in England, Man United has this political power, and you have to respect that and shut your mouth.”
Suarez went on to describe how emotionally draining the saga had been for him in the middle of the Premier League season.
“It was so hard what happened to me,” Suarez continued. “I don’t show my emotions in the field, you know, but outside I do it and I cried a lot with all the Evra stuff.
“The trial week was so complicated for me. My wife and I cried a lot during that week. That’s when I realised who were the people who really support me and who were the people who were with me because of their personal interest. People at the club are sure that it was a way that Man United used to put me out of the team and stop Liverpool.”